Co-Op Live and BAM engage with their 1,000th Manchester student

BAM - Co-Op Live

The construction firm behind Co-op Live - the new £350 million live entertainment venue by Oak View Group and City Football Group – have engaged their 1000th young student this week. The firm, BAM, have been working closely with the Co-op Live team to help students with their education, understanding of careers, and to support their courses.


Students from Belle Vue Co-op Academy and Failsworth Co-op Academy, both part of the Co-op Academies Trust, became the latest to visit the site, which presently has over 400 people working on it. 

They join over a dozen other schools, universities and colleges who have either sent delegations or received presentations from the BAM and the Co-op Live teams, to see and study the progress of the UK’s largest live entertainment arena. Stretched end-to-end the scheme has enough concrete columns to reach the International Space Station.

Student visitors have ranged from specialist institutions such as Hopwood Hall Construction College and Manchester Metropolitan University through schools such as Oxford Brooks College, down to younger minds like those at Plymouth Grove Primary School, experiencing their first look at a construction site and igniting curiosity.

After one visit Thabisile Moyo of Co-op Academy Swinton showed she had been paying close attention, writing: “Co-op Live is set to be the UK’s most socially responsible and environmentally sustainable arena. This will be achieved by using things like 10,500m squares of rooftop solar panels as a sustainable source of energy, as well as pledging to donate more than £1 million to charities every year.”

Alison Power - BAM

Alison Power, BAM’s Education and Community Co-ordinator

“Both the Co-op Live and BAM teams wanted to use the fantastic opportunity that working on the UK’s largest indoor entertainment venue presents to help those around us learn and develop their own careers. We don’t just want to build a phenomenal landmark; we want to leave a legacy of improving lives; one our partners Oak View and City Football Group will continue to develop after the venue is open.

“The scale and complexity of the work means so many young students can gain from it, supporting their professional studies as well as simply firing up the enthusiasm of younger minds to see the range of activities construction offers them.”

The University of Bolton’s engineering students recently visited the development, with Professor Peter Farrell saying, “The BAM team and project managers went above and beyond to ensure our students were given a fantastic overview of the project.”

Students said they found the presentations and tours “inspirational”. One student was even offered the opportunity to be mentored by one of the construction team.  

Eva Suiter, Employer Engagement Consultant, said: “We are very grateful for the support that the BAM and Co-op Live teams gave to the University. Allowing our students to enhance their classroom learning with site visits and presentations on live projects is invaluable to their learning.”

The site team includes site and project managers, engineers, quantity surveyors, designers, health and safety, logistics and administrative personnel, and around 20 local subcontracting firms.

Sara Tomkins, Marketing and CSR Director at Co-op Live, said: “As part of our commitment to the local community and talent development, we have had so much fun engaging with over 1000 students from local school, colleges, and universities, developing their understanding of the music and construction industries and what Co-op Live will be offering the people of Manchester and beyond. These ongoing visits form part of our wider ethos by opening up opportunities for local young people to be a part of the biggest and best venue in the UK.”

BAM - Co-Op Live